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Discussion Starter #1
Steering is hard, but not so tight that the pump is not working. I made the easy attempt to change the fluid. Sucking out top multiple times. Didn’t help. Used two quarts, should be clean,right? Used Castrol Transmax import transmission fluid for Honda,Toyota,Nissan like I read here.
 

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Have you ever changed the reservoir (which has the integral filter)?

Also look for pinched lines.
 

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Are you 100% sure the power steering on yours takes ATF? I would not have used that Castrol unless Dex 3 was spec'd. If you have a green label on the cap that says "CHF11"... well then you need to flush the system ASAP or you'll be replacing the pump.

If the belt doesn't squeel or you don't hear bearing grind, do NOT change the pump. Take the belt off and spin the pump by hand and listen for bearing growl.

Your tight steering is coming from binding linkage: tie rods, strut bearings, column u-joints. Get both front tires off the ground, key on (not started) and manual turn the wheels by grabbing the tires. Pop each tie rid off the knuckles to isolate strut bearings as a source. Reconnect tie rods, pop column off the rack and see how much resistance you get at the joints.

I assume you're in Jersey... salt rusts steel, joints freeze.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I may try the res. filter route. It’s not a constant thing, it varies. Maybe the fluid isn’t moving fast enough thru the filter? No green label on cap.
 

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Forget about the filter or ATF vs CHF. It should turn nevertheless.

1) do you have any noise when turning?

2) is your front tires aligned straight?

3) do you have oil leaking from steering rack?

best way is to find bmw specialist

since my steering rack was good I replaced my power steering pump and all is good.

please dont buy aftermarket power steering pump - they make less pressure

oem or oem-used
 

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OP - has your steering gotten heavier or does it just feel heavy compared to other cars? FWIW my 07 steering is much heavier than the 08 due to a different pump and rack.

Also, my 07 had a green sticker on the reservoir cap which has since fallen off, so if I didn't have photos I would not have known.

How many miles on car?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The steering has gotten heavier. I’ve had the car for 10 years. Never had green sticker on res. Cap. 150,000 miles
 
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